Sawicki’s has cleared out of Decatur locationThe empty Sawicki's store in downtown Decatur. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt
This story has been updated.
Sawicki’s Meat Seafood & More is no more.
Decaturish dropped by the sandwich shop on West Ponce de Leon Avenue, across from the CVS shopping center, to find the building empty. The tables and chairs were gone and the lights were off. The company made no announcement on its website or Facebook page. The company released a statement on Tuesday confirming the business had closed as of Feb. 14.
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According to the Sawicki’s website, the business opened in downtown Decatur in 2007. The restaurant sold sandwiches, fine meats and seafood and also sold baked goods. The website says Sawicki’s sold “only the finest artisanal and local products.”
The statement from from owner Lynne Sawicki said, in part, “A business must make a consistent profit to continue and although we have had many good months in our nine years, too many unprofitable months have prevailed recently. The increases in the cost of doing business are more than our scale in Decatur can support.”
In a phone interview with Decaturish, she added, “It’s just that Decatur’s getting too expensive. That’s really the bottom line. It’s not about the quality at all. Loved every minute of it. You can’t pay for things you can’t keep open. I wish I had a much larger customer base it but it just wasn’t happening.”
We asked whether the parking situation around her business had played any role in her decision. Recently private lots in Decatur, like the one near CVS, have become notorious for “booting” vehicles that park there and visit other locations.
Sawicki didn’t blame her decision on booting per se, but noted that parking has been a consistent challenge for her. She said, “Had I better parking situation … it probably would’ve helped. Sure. You’re relying on people to be repeat customers.”
But, she added, the city’s emphasis has been on making Decatur a walkable downtown, which means keeping vehicle traffic to a minimum.
“The city is very strong about wanting it to be a walking town,” she said. “They’re standing true to that. It’s a good idea to keep it green. Our small business owners can’t live off that. It’s not enough. Just not enough.”
Here is Sawicki’s full statement:
“With a heavy heart, I must announce that I closed my store for the final time, Sawicki’s Meat, Seafood and More, on Sunday, February 14,” said Lynne Sawicki.
“A business must make a consistent profit to continue and although we have had many good months in our nine years, too many unprofitable months have prevailed recently. The increases in the cost of doing business are more than our scale in Decatur can support.
“Although I believe in the viability of downtown Decatur, it is an expensive place to do business. I will miss my devoted employees, my store and my wonderful regular customers.”
Sawicki has many years of professional culinary experience working for Anne Quatrano, at Bacchanalia, Floataway Café and Star Provisions, and is well known in Atlanta culinary circles as a very talented chef.
Her next move? “I’m on the lookout for an executive chef position and I’m so glad Atlanta is a true foodie town with so many great restaurants and opportunities.”
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